Project: San Marino Residence
Architects: Bohlin Cywinski Jackson
Design team: Peter Bohlin, Daniel Lee, George Murphy, Christopher Renn
Interior designer: Deborah Wecselman Design
Location: Miami Beach, Florida
Photography: Jeffrey Totaro
San Marino Residence, located on an island in Biscayne Bay, is a reinterpretation of the regional post-war Miami Modernist architecture movement. The clients, who own a winery in Santa Barbara, California, requested an indoor-outdoor experience within a tropical landscape while creating a sense of being on the water. They also requested extensive exterior lounge spaces and an exceptional lap pool. Nestled among neighboring houses and a lush garden, the residence’s plan and form create a visceral oasis.
The house is designed to fit within a narrow, wedge-shaped site and organized to provide framed views of the water and Miami Beach skyline. It is composed of three primary linear elements: a two-story bar along the site’s western edge that contains living and sleeping spaces; an elevated lap pool that reaches out to the bay; and a single-story guest and office wing along the property’s eastern edge. The pool, with its dramatic 18-foot cantilever, marks the home’s front door. One approaches the entry on axis with a colonnade that extends toward the sea the full length of the pool above.
Living and sleeping areas are cooled by prevailing sea breezes through large operable glass doors that open to the garden, shaded by broad roof overhangs that mitigate solar heat gain at the full-height window walls. An open stair bathed in natural daylight connects the living and sleeping levels, while floor-to-floor glazing connects the interiors to an abundance of outdoor decks and balconies. A minimalist palette of concrete, Ipe, white oak, and limestone serves as a neutral canvas and complements the home’s tropical landscape.